What a week! All things important in life have gone well. I have no real complaints, but that has never stopped me from doing just a little bit of grumbling. This Spam issue has me a bit turned on end. I am still being exiled to the place for naughty comments and it’s more than a little time consuming doing what I can to rectify the situation. So far WordPress hasn’t been helpful but I’ll just sing a few bars of “Que Sera, Sera” and truly whatever will be, will be.
I had my camera close to me as I enjoyed the backyard this week. I always acknowledge the summer solstice with a little more time in the garden. My favorite time of day is sunset, and I often find myself quieting after work and spending time just walking about noting how things are growing, which birds are feeding at the feeders and, of course, looking at the early evening sky. It’s difficult to see the actual sunset because we don’t have an unobstructed line of sight. But I enjoy the shadows and the changing light anyway.
The late afternoon sun illuminated the part of the backyard railroad we’ve designated as “the canyon.” I keep teasing with the train, but one of these days I’ll share the photos of the project from start to finish. It was quite a season of backyard transformation.
Here’s a strange little succulent! Those aren’t rocks you see in the picture. It’s a Pleiospilos bolusil…or if that’s too big a mouthful, try Living Stones. It’s an odd little succulent from South Africa, with the common name split rock. Experts say that the plant is so drought tolerant it can go an entire year without water in our climate. We have some with pink flowers, too, but they aren’t blooming right now.
The backyard stream is part of a larger water feature. The sound of running water is our favored contribution to reducing the effects of daily stress. We do what we can to mask the noise and activity that comes with living in suburbia! I can forget that a major thoroughfare is only one block beyond our front door!
I had a few surprises in the vegetable garden, too! I get so excited with each and every bloom and spend time every evening checking for signs of insects or distress, and admiring signs of healthy growth. But apparently I wasn’t as eagle-eyed as I thought I was.
Just look at the size of this summer squash next to two beautiful courgettes! Courgettes? What’s that you say?
I can almost hear the question. Why am I calling the zucchini courgettes? Very simple. It’s my new favorite word. Claire, at Promenade Plantings commented on my lovely courgettes, and I fell in love with the word! I hope to impress all my friends with my new terminology.
I also brewed some chocolate mint tea. The mint was an add-on to our weekly produce box and they were extremely generous. We’ve enjoyed the mint tea all week. I picked about 20 leaves, rolled them in my hand just a bit to bruise them, and simply steeped them in some boiling water. It was refreshing and the mint aroma and mild taste (chocolate mint is not as strong as peppermint) was very calming. No caffeine for me in the evening!
But I’ve saved the best for last. The evenings have been lovely and we’ve eaten outdoors. While eating at our little glass table I was still looking around, taking in all that I could see! Looking out, my glance shifted to the power poles in the far corner of my neighbor’s yard. I spied something I’ve never seen before!
Jay ran for the binoculars as I grabbed my camera! This is a hawk family! Two parents and two babies! We have lived in our home for almost 40 years and I’ve never seen anything like this. Not long after I snapped this picture the two adult hawks flew off in tandem. The babies sat patiently waiting for mom and dad to return, presumably with a little dinner.
I zoomed in as close as I could to admire one of the babies. I don’t know if I’ll ever have the opportunity to see the little family again, but it was a real treat! How glad I was that we had slowed down long enough to take a leisurely dinner outdoors!
Weekends are often a chance to do the same. Slow down long enough to take notice. Make a mindful exhale, and let’s enjoy the simple things we find this weekend.
Ahhh. Let it go!
Breathing lighter, Debra
- Oh NO! I’ve been marked as Spam! (breathelighter.wordpress.com)